Habs getting better every game, coach Therrien says

The Canadiens held an optional morning skate in Brossard before Game 4 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Boston Bruins Thursday night at the Bell Centre (7:30 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

Seven players decided to skip the skate: Max Pacioretty, Brian Gionta, Brendan Gallagher, Dale Weise, Lars Eller, P.K. Subban and goalie Carey Price.

The Canadiens have a 6-1 record in the postseason and coach Michel Therrien told reporters after practice his team continues to improve.

“As a series progresses, the more intense and physical games become,” he said. “But we’ve been getting better every game.”

The Bruins announced Thursday morning they have recalled forward Matt Fraser from the Providence Bruins and assigned Justin Florek to their AHL minor-league team. Fraser was on the fourth line at the Bruins’ morning skate with Matt Fraser and Shawn Thornton.

Here’s how the Bruins’ lines looked at their morning skate with Carl Soderberg taking the option not to skate:

Lucic-Bergeron-Eriksson
Paille-Krejci-Smith
Marchand-Campbell-Iginla
Fraser-Caron-Thornton

The Canadiens announced on Thursday that they have signed defenceman Greg Pateryn to a two-year contract extension. In 68 games with the AHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs this season, Pateryn had 15-19-34 totals and 67 penalty minutes.

Meanwhile, 6-year-old Tristan Passarelli might be able to give Ginette Reno a run for her money when it comes to singing the national anthem. Check out the video below:

(Photo by John Mahoney/The Gazette)

Game 4 Preview, NHL.com

Game Notes

Game Day Report, Canadiens.com

Five keys to Game 4, Canadiens.com

Griping intensifies ahead of Game 4, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Subban is a star for our time, by Jack Todd for The Gazette

Bruins paying for power-play struggles, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

Julien promises Bruins will be better in Game 4, by The Gazette’s Brenda Branswell

Gallagher’s impact on Habs far exceeds his size, NHL.com

Humble Weise gets rock-star treatment, montrealgazette.com

P.K. Subban is killing the Bruins, Boston Globe

Bruins first line stuck in gear, Boston Herald

Hab at heart: Ginette Reno, Canadiens.com

Dick Irvin receives his Order of Canada, Stu on Sports blog

 

345 Comments

  1. dhenry1234 says:

    Time for the Canadiens to show the Bruins who the true Kings of the Jungle are!!!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LBmUwi6mEo

    Briere gets 2 goals tonight and Gally sinks 1 too!!!

    GO HABS GO!!! GO HABS GO!!!

  2. DipsyDoodler says:

    SteverenO.

    Check this out.

    Internet Explorer causes mureder:

    http://gizmodo.com/5977989/internet-explorer-vs-murder-rate-will-be-your-favorite-chart-today

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

  3. Danno says:

    Live Blog!

    We Want Live Blog!

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  4. Mats26 says:

    So I am now old enough to realize that what I say has no bearing on the oucome of this series, so here goes…

    If the Habs beat the Bruins and then the Penguins, I gotta imagine that Michel Therrien will be the first head coach in professional sports history to beat the opposing coach who took his job in two consecutive playoff series.

  5. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Gooins calling up Matt Fraser, what does that tell you? They plan to goon it up tonight & I hope our boys will stay composed & turn the other cheek. Don’t trust those bastards at all as they will use every tactic available to win & in most cases the officials will look the other way. Hope I’m wrong but once a Gooin always a friggin Gooin.

    Hate that team like a sickness.

    • B says:

      Fraser had 10 hits in 14 games this season for Boston and he’s replacing 6’4″ Florek. It’s a very minor 4th line tweak.

      –Go Habs Go!–

    • Ron says:

      I think you got the wrong Fraser. Check out his fight stats. Not good in either the AHL or his 2 NHL. Got leveled by Marcus Foligno and then Wright from the Peg. His AHL stuff is very poor. Hope I didn’t miss something here but unless he is there to take out DD or Gally I can’t see any problem.

  6. Luke says:

    It’s VE Day!
    Usually I’d have clued into that sooner…
    Just a tip of the hat to all who sacrificed.
    (69 years ago… wow).

  7. boing007 says:

    French nickname for Brendan Gallagher: Gallymouche. Like a mouche noire on skates. Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!

    Richard R

  8. on2ndthought says:

    The Habs are the bravest team in this series!

    “a cannonading drive”

  9. habs-fan-84 says:

    One thing that drives me nuts, is when the media talks about there not being a better coach to replace an existing coach. In this case, Carlyle.

    I submit Jon Cooper and Dan Bylsma as examples of coaches who had little experience (as head coaches in the NHL) at the time they were hired, but were able to figure it out relatively quickly.

    This idea of recycling the same tired NHL coaches, because there’s no one out there who is “better”, has “more experience” or has “won a Cup” is something I find irritating and to a certain extent naive.

    Edit: Add Patrick Roy’s name to the list as well.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Bylsma is the most overrated coach in the NHL IMO..

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • JUST ME says:

      I agree that at some point one will have to look outside the country club. It looks as though there are more former players being chosen instead of coaches by profession these days . Furthermore new coaches have what it seems as a shorter leash and are not given the same chance as the older guys.

      This non Carlyle news will have the CBC and TSN talking for a few weeks about a team that has been eliminated for a month instead of talking about the only canadian team still shining .

    • Chris says:

      There are lots of junior coaches who are outstanding. Benoit Groulx is one who jumps out as being long overdue for a head coaching shot in the NHL.

      As you mentioned, AHL coaches like Cooper and Bylsma have proven that AHL coaches absolutely can jump in and have immediate success.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        Until they come up against Jacques Martin or Michael Therrien..

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

      • JUST ME says:

        I have heard that Groulx does not want a job in the NHL at least for now and wants to invest in quality familly time . Can`t blame him for that choice although i agree that he would be a prime candidate.

      • habs-fan-84 says:

        Exactly Chris.
        I just find it strange that NHL teams choose to limit themselves to the degree they do. I suppose part of that is the GMs not wanting to take a risk on an “unknown” and “unproven” coach.

  10. Sakus Evil Twin says:

    Does Ryan White get a look in during this series?

    No answers, just opinions. Bite me. Och.

    • Luke says:

      depends on who the Bruins intentionally injure…

      • Sakus Evil Twin says:

        I guess my question really is, while RW brings some grit and fire to the lineup (and some pushback which I think might be required tonight), does he play too close to the edge to get a look in? i.e. cant afford the penalties?

        Been having this discussion with a colleague…

        No answers, just opinions. Bite me. Och.

        • Luke says:

          I was just kidding, sort of.

          I think he only dresses in the case of injury. The only spot I could see him getting time at is to replace a Moen/Prust/Bourny if necessary, but he’s far down the list.

          (IMO)

          • Sakus Evil Twin says:

            or *gasp* Brière?

            No answers, just opinions. Bite me. Och.

          • Luke says:

            Maybe.
            Briere is (IMO) more versatile. More capable of chipping in a goal when you really need one. Down by 1 goal with 8 minutes left, I’d rather have Briere on the bench than White.

            However, yah, I could see that swap as well. I don’t think it’d be likely.

  11. Habilis says:

    Anyone looking for a pregame chuckle should check out the comments section here: http://www.pensionplanpuppets.com/2014/5/8/5695758/maple-leafs-announce-randy-carlyle-to-return-as-head-coach-this-team-hates-you

    Seems that the Loafs fans aren’t too happy about Carlyle’s extension. Made me laugh.

  12. habsfan0 says:

    I hope the Desharnais,Vanek,Pacioretty line is reunited tonight.
    I have a hunch they’d have a pretty good game as they’re due.

    • Say Ash says:

      Doubt it. Move Vanek off the line and they need two Bergerons. They don’t have two Bergerons.

    • JUST ME says:

      I thought that putting Gallagher back on the first line was a good move and things seemed to come back in place by moments. I would not be surprised to see results tonight. This duo of Max and D.D. benefit greatly from having as small pest like Gallagher.

      Also i think Vanek will benefit to play with Plek.

  13. SteverenO says:

    Looking over the stats I was surprised to find out who were our “top” performers DEFENSIVELY so far in the playoffs.

    This is measured by goals allowed per minute of ice time (even strength) can you guess the top three?

    #3 Mike Weaver – – 47 MpGA — 2 GA 94 minutes
    #2 David Desharnais – 58 MpGA — 2 GA 116 minutes
    #1 Danny Briere – 64 MpGA – 1 GA 64 minutes

    Th eothjer side of the coin>>>>>

    the top three LEAST efefctive defensively:

    Gallagher: 15 MpGA 7 GA 105 minutres
    Bournival 15 MpGA 4 GA 61 minutes
    Plekanec ; 12 MpGA 10 GA 120 minutes

    One more reason why Therrien should reunite the Briere, Plekanec, Gionta line?

    regards,

    Steve O.

    • on2ndthought says:

      of course Pleks gets the tougher assignments, but DD has been solid in his own zone, and Briere has been good with his outlets and better with his deep offensive control (in limited time)

      “a cannonading drive”

      • Luke says:

        I think DD has had an excellent playoffs.
        Even the lack of scoring from the top line, well, they see the checking, so it has opened Lars & Rene up for offense. Now if they dry up, the trio will have to start producing or we are sunk.

    • shiram says:

      This lacks context though, as it does not take quality of opposition or zone starts in consideration.

      I really doubt Brière gets top 6 ES time.

    • mark-ID says:

      Not to mention Habs are 6-1 so far in the playoffs and they have been playing some of their best hockey since Gionta has been shifted to the third line. That line has also been one of our best….don’t mess with a good thing.

      “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

    • bwoar says:

      Yes, Plekanec is among our worst defensive forwards. You nailed it! Someone finally uncovers the truth.

    • Cal says:

      Did you look at how many goals are scored for or would that be too pro-Habs for ya?

  14. habs-fan-84 says:

    GO HABS GO!!

  15. Mr_MacDougall says:

    Anybody else watch the Habs Bruins games angry?

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  16. HabinBurlington says:

    Enjoy the game Folks!

    GO HABS GO!

  17. adamkennelly says:

    I got conference calls for the next 2.5 hours – thankfully I won’t have to talk too much so I can peruse HIO while building up my game day thirst.

  18. Danno says:

    Was there – or was there not – too many men on the ice for PK’s spectacular shorty?

    Discuss.

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  19. Maritime Ronn says:

    Happy Birthday today to Old Man…Lars Eller.
    He turned 25 years old today.

  20. Danno says:

    Coach Therrien says: “We gotta lotta Dep.”

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  21. Rad says:

    Looking over some of the posts on this site over the past 2 days, there seems to be some trepidation about how the Big, Bad Bruins are going to come in and make minced meat out of the Habs in Game 4. I don’t think this fear is grounded in reality. These Bruins are not nearly as intimidating as some may think. On this year’s Bruins team, only Chara, Lucic, Thornton, Iginla, and Boychuk can really punish you – that’s 5 players on a game-day roster of 20. Chara, Thornton, and Iginla are all around 37 years old. Chara is nursing a sore wrist, and is not the physical force he has been in the past. Thornton is a 4th liner who will play limited minutes, and neither is Iginla the physical force he once was. Lucic is easy to anger and take off his game. He is liable to take some bad penalties that the Canadiens can take advantage of.

    I think the Habs will be fine in the physical department. We have some size of our own in Rene Bourque, Travis Moen, Lars Eller, Max Pacioretty, Thomas Vanek, Dale Weise, and Douglas Murray. The Bruins are sure to get some good hits in against our guys, that is to be expected. We would have got hit a lot more by a team like Columbus. Those boys take the body every chance they get, and they hit clean. From a hitting perspective, the Bruins are actually a more desirable match-up for us than the Blue Jackets would have been.

    • TheLogician says:

      concur…a lot of it is in our/their minds. posted in another thread earlier today:
      ************************

      i agree with those saying we may tend to over-exaggerate the Bs’ “toughness” while under-estimating our own.

      when it comes to hits, Bs are only middle of the pack (12th), averaging just 3.5 more per game than us (20th).

      http://www.sportingcharts.com/nhl/stats/team-hit-statistics/2013/

      and as others have suggested, we are no longer wilting flowers when it comes to engaging via dropped gloves. measured in terms of fighting majors, we were right up at the top of the league (5th), with only 5 fewer fights than the Bs (2nd).

      NHL Team FM Leaders
      Toronto Maple Leafs 48
      Boston Bruins 46
      Philadelphia Flyers 45
      Vancouver Canucks 43
      Montreal Canadiens 41
      Anaheim Ducks 40
      Columbus Blue Jackets 39
      New York Islanders 39
      Ottawa Senators 39
      Nashville Predators 37

      http://www.hockeyfights.com/

      they’ve gotten softer over the past couple of years while we’ve gotten grittier. the closing of that gap has been noticeable in this series.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Rad, Log.
      I posted something similar on the “Show” thread earlier, and I agree. The notion of the Big Bad Bruins is now bordering on the mythical. There are really only a handful of seriously physical players (the ones Rad lists), plus cheap-shot artists, led by Rat Boy.

      For tonight’s game I don’t so much fear heavy forechecking or crease-clearing. I fear Bobby Clarke-style assignments. Boston are no doubt desperate not to go home 3-1 down.


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